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Bangladesh: Sundarbans fishers still tangled in web of oppression by local influentials by Mohammad Jamil Khan November 16,2021   |  Source: The Daily Star

The anglers can finally move freely inside the forest now that the robbers are gone. And all this has been possible because of my contributions, Kamal Uddin Leader of the Sahebs. Reaching deep inside the Sundarbans, one will be taken aback to see mobile banking agents at such a remote place. But their set-ups inside the forest do a lot to help thousands of anglers, who build temporary houses there during fishing season. During November every year, at the onset of winter, the remote island of Dublar Char located at the southern border of the Sundarbans, facing the Bay of Bengal becomes vibrant with the footprint of around 30,000 deep-sea anglers and people engaged in fish drying. They stay in the island for five months, braving natural disasters and other hardships. Over the last three years, their numbers have only risen, thanks to the surrender of 32 robber gangs in 2018. On November 1 of the same year, the Sundarbans was declared "robber-free" by the government. During this time, the anglers' and fish driers' business have steadily increased. However, a new hurdle impedes further growth of their trade.

With the robbers gone, their place has been taken by a group of influential people, widely known as "Saheb". Currently, the situation at the island is so grave that no one


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Years in Support of Small Scale Fishworkers (1986 - 2018)